Dave/Ed/Nick draw breath, use the time the fixed term gives you!

Posted on 29 July 2014 (Permalink)

Dave/Ed/Nick draw breath, use the time the fixed term gives you!

A fixed term Parliament should, and in future will, ensure a more rational end to a Governments term, a thoughtful final year, stocktaking, planning the next term, and working with the electorate in a process of mutual education.

But not this, the first time.

Old habits die hard and will need to be left behind as surely as a discarded chrysalis.

It is time to calm down, this is a pace and a level of neurosis that cannot be sustained and is not healthy for any of the players, above all the electorate. Next May will be with us soon enough. Time now for all of us to think about why we are in politics, what do we want to achieve, what are our beliefs, how should we relate to our electorate? For David, Ed, Nick and the rest of us lucky enough not to be in a helter skelter marginal, precious days to set aside twitching gimmickry and draw breath, regroup , and set out our stall.
One zen like exercise we can all start with to restore our balance is to write 350 words or less to craft your own Preamble which would head up a UK Written Constitution. Being clear yet inspirational about your own political values and how they fit our society is a much harder challenge than you think. Just for your own peace of mind, while you can, before battle commences, use this time at home, by the pool or up the mountain to put into words what we should be about. If you want to share it send it to pcrc@parliament.uk , if not then just keep it close and refer to it when you need -as you will in coming months -a sense of proportion and perspective.

So with less than 300 days to go we can see the loss of the fixed term virginity in the anxious, febrile, over active reflexes of politicians prodded on by an ever hungry media. Schoolboys trying to out-sprint each other in the first mile of a marathon.

Graham Allen MP is Chair of the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee who are holding a competition (www.parliament.uk/pcrc-constitution  )to find the best Preamble to the recently published model UK Written Constitution.